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Devoured Flesh
(Xtreem Music)

Considering all the time it took me to finally start writing this review, it seems as if I'm getting more and more tired of "brutal Death Metal". The reason why I finally got my arse over to the computer is this very record: HUMAN MINCER abandoned their froggy vocals almost completely and although there are still better Death Metal vocalists than Carlos around, he does quite a good job despite a certain monotony that still can be found in his department. On the other hand, he did quite some impressive work on 'Eternal Ways Of Devil', for example. One more word about the technical abilities of the rest of the band? World class - and the drumming simply can't be from this world. Most importantly, all those strange chords and millions of breaks mysteriously do not take away the energy and brutality of this CD. So what's left to talk about is the songwriting, right? In my opinion there aren't many bands in the genre that come up with "hits" (and that's what a gay pop fan like me is exclusively looking for). SUFFOCATION, CRYPTOPSY and maybe DEEDS OF FLESH do. DISGORGE and DISAVOWED both wrote one ('She Lay Gutted', resp. 'Rhizome') but that's pretty much what I can think of at the moment. Did I finally manage to make a few enemies? Good. Surprisingly, HUMAN MINCER seem to approach that level as their songwriting almost successfully avoids the trap of brutal Death monotony and still kicks some serious butt. I can imagine I'll find something really outstanding on their next record but at least for my taste there is something on every song that doesn't fully convince me - like the slightly annoying opening riff on 'Ghost Of The Past' or the lack of intensity in the vocals' department after the impressive opening growler on 'Nest Of Hate'. On the other hand, there are quite a few good reasons why HUMAN MINCER simply rocks: the break after approx. 2 minutes on 'Light Of Evil' for example takes some tension first before you're smashed again. So the bottom line is: if the band keeps this level and adds the little something, they're gonna be great. Right now I dare say brutal Death fanatics and Death Metal musicians will dig this one. I bet they're impressive on stage, by the way.

Ramon Claassen

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